Skip to comments.Sheriff Says Amish Bishop Threatened To Kill Him
Posted on 09/19/2007 4:26:10 PM PDT by decimon
The Jefferson County sheriff said he and his deputies received several death threats from an Amish bishop with regard to a child custody dispute, prompting him to have the regional SWAT team on standby Tuesday.
Sheriff Fred Abdalla was ordered to take Wilma Troyer's daughters, ages 21 months and 9 months, as part of a domestic dispute with her husband who currently lives with his family in Potter County, Pa.
The sheriff said he and one other deputy went alone up to the school to serve the court order, but said Troyer, an Amish teacher, instead locked herself in the building.
Attorney Bryan Felmet, spokesman for the Amish community, called the incident a raid and said the one-room schoolhouse was the stage for a dramatic showdown between an Amish mother and sheriff's deputies.
Felmet said there were 29 children in the school on county Road 53 when several cruisers from the sheriff's department and a SWAT team entered the grounds.
In a rare move, the Amish -- who typically do not go on camera -- described the incident on a video posted on YouTube.com.
"(The sheriff) was knocking on the door, 'Open up, open. I want to talk to Wilma Troyer. Open that door. I have a court order,'" Troyer said. "Those children were in there crying and screaming, 'They're going to shoot us.'"'
Troyer said the children exited the schoolhouse, surrounding her, and walked down the road. She was detained and served with the court papers at a nearby farmhouse and her children removed into the custody of their father.
Samuel Mullet, an Amish bishop and Wilma Troyer's mother, said the community is outraged.
"I said, 'This is crazy. You know none of us guys have guns out here. We wouldn't use them if we had them,'" Mullet said.
But Abdalla disagreed and said Mullet threatened his life on more than one occasion.
"If it wasn't for all the allegations being made, for all the statements being made and the threats being made, we would have handled it differently," the sheriff said.
Abdalla said he doesn't regret the show of force.
"I don't care if it's a school or church. I'm going to take whatever action is necessary," he said. "Based on threats to my life and on my deputies' lives, based on the threats (Mullet) has made on his own family, surely Mr. Brian Felmet doesn't think I should approach that situation with sticks in my hand."
Abdalla said the children were never in any danger.
"When they came out of the school, I kept telling the children, 'Kids, nothing is wrong here. Nobody is going to get hurt. You don't need to cry,'" he said.
Abdalla also said there are "some very serious allegations" of molestation and attempted rape in that Amish community. The sheriff's department is also investigating the death of a 2-year-old Amish boy who lived in the community. An autopsy on that toddler was never performed though required by law, Abdalla said.
He showed a stack of letters from people he claims left the Bergholz community and are begging him to step in. Further, he said the Amish in that community are being threatened psychologically.
"(Mullet) told the children we were going to get them and put needles in them. My God, any child would be scared," Abdalla said.
A hearing is scheduled in Jefferson County magistrate court on Thursday to discuss custody of Troyer's children. Stay with NEWS9 and WTOV9.com for continuing coverage as details become available.
-Renee Cardelli & John Paul, NEWS9
Maybe I'll be shown wrong, but we'll see.
I’m with you on this one.
Wonder what the truth is.
Kill you with a horse shoe, a rake, and a pitchfork. Don’t mess, man!
i don't know. these guys look pretty mean.
I used to spend a lot of time in the area (ex-wife's family lives there) and Abdalla is one of those "Generalissimos For Life" types. Organized crime enjoys having him in charge.
I don't know but I get a creepy Waco feeling. Gotta hope this is handled sensibly.
I think one of them is pretty mean with a sword.
there can be only one!
other sheriff abdalla stories
Not to mention a buggy whip.
quite a cat, this abdalla
As with Waco, there may not be any sympathetic parties involved. It comes down to what happened in this particular incident.
Let me get this straight, Sheriff Abdalla feared an unarmed Amish school teacher and her class of young children?
Mullet) told the children we were going to get them and put needles in them. My God, any child would be scared,” Abdalla said
Leave that to us professionals. ;^(
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.